Group pushes for expanded BadgerCare in downtown Wausau demonstration

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WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) A group of healthcare advocates assembled on Wausau’s 400 Block Monday afternoon urging lawmakers to accept federal funds for Medicaid in order to expand Wisconsin’s BadgerCare program.

The legislature is taking up the budget this week and Citizens Action of Wisconsin wants those lawmakers to hear them. They say it will save the state money and also improve healthcare.

"The governor's proposal would've expanded health care access to 82-thousand Wisconsin residents and about 1600 in Marathon County and saving the state $325 million that could've been invested in other programs,” said Marathon County Supervisor John Robinson.

Democratic Governor Tony Evers proposed accepting the funds in his state budget but so far Republican lawmakers have not agreed.

Republicans say it makes more sense to keep residents in the private insurance market instead of adding them to the state Medicaid plan.